Author

Perry Beeman

Perry Beeman

Senior reporter Perry Beeman has nearly 40 years of experience in Iowa journalism and has won national awards for environmental and business writing. He has written for The Des Moines Register and the Business Record, where he also served as managing editor. He also is former editorial director of Grinnell College. He co-authored the recently published book, "The $80 Billion Gamble," which details the lottery-rigging case of Eddie Tipton.

Hart: Congress should stop environmental rollbacks, support ethanol

By: - September 23, 2020

Democratic congressional candidate Rita Hart said the next Congress should reverse Trump administration rollbacks on environmental regulations and address climate change by working with farmers and supporting ethanol.  “We can’t go backwards,” Hart said in an interview with Iowa Capital Dispatch. The 64-year-old former state senator and former teacher is running against Ottumwa ophthalmologist and […]

Speakers: Small businesses may fail by year’s end without new aid

By: - September 22, 2020

Without new aid from Congress, small businesses will struggle to stay open throughout 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic continues, speakers told the Greater Des Moines Partnership on Tuesday. The Partnership gathered small business experts as part of its virtual version of the annual DMDC lobbying trip to Washington, canceled due to the spread of COVID-19. […]

Nation’s largest skatepark eyes spring opening in D.M., boost for worker recruitment and tourism

By: - September 21, 2020

Iowa gets plenty of national buzz as home to the first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses. But ask out-of-staters what they think of Iowa, and many struggle to form an image beyond the obvious corn-and-ag “American Gothic” cliches. That, business leaders say, can be a challenge when they try to lure workers to Iowa and keep them here. […]

Iowa beach advisories down for algae toxins, up for bacteria

By: - September 19, 2020

The number of swimming advisories for algae toxins has dropped from a year ago, even though the state used a tougher standard, Iowa Department of Natural Resources records show.  But the more prevalent fecal bacteria problems at state-park beaches led to a near-doubling of advisories for E. coli. High levels of that fecal bacteria typically […]

Airport lobbyist: Federal help for Des Moines’ cash-short terminal project will have to wait

By: - September 17, 2020

The most critical piece of Des Moines International Airport’s remaining funding for a new terminal will have to wait until the new Congress is sworn in and the coronavirus pandemic subsides, a national airport industry lobbyist told the Greater Des Moines Partnership Thursday.  “All of it is going to be in the new Congress,” said […]

Iowa lawmakers blast USDA secretary after reports of Southern advantage in trade-deal aid payments

By: - September 16, 2020

Iowa politicians from both parties blasted the U.S. Department of Agriculture after it reportedly favored Southern states in 2019 trade-war aid payments. The nonpartisan U.S. Government Accountability Office this week reported that eight of the nine states receiving the highest payments per acre were in the South. GAO launched an investigation at the request of […]

Second state panel approves $100 million natural resources budget

By: - September 15, 2020

The state would increase spending on lake restorations, water trails and park improvements as part of a proposed 2021-22 budget approved by a second state panel Tuesday.  The governor-appointed Environmental Protection Commission approved the $100.1 million proposal. The budget would increase spending $2.3 million, or about 2.3%, from the current year’s budget.  The only increases […]

EPA turns down oil refineries’ biofuels exemption requests

By: - September 14, 2020

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, less than two months before the Nov. 3 elections, has rejected small oil refineries’ requests to blend less ethanol.  EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler on Monday said the refineries had not proven they faced hardships that would warrant the government stepping back from its insistence that refineries blend 15 billion gallons […]

Branstad to leave ‘tough job’ as ambassador; allies praise him for calm, ag-friendly diplomacy

By: - September 14, 2020

U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad served as a calming force during a particularly rocky period in U.S.-China relations, helping to lead to a resurgence in the communist nation’s purchases of American crops, his Iowa allies said Monday. News spread early Monday Iowa time that Branstad, 73, Iowa’s longest-serving governor, will step down as ambassador […]

DNR budget calls for increases for lake restoration, water trails

By: - September 10, 2020

The Iowa Natural Resource Commission on Thursday endorsed a mostly status quo budget  that would seek more money for lake restoration and water trails.  The Department of Management ordered the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to use the budget for the current fiscal year as a base for the 2021-22 budget proposal.  DNR complied, with […]

Miller-Meeks: Increase in fuel tax could pay for infrastructure

By: - September 10, 2020

GOP congressional candidate Mariannette Miller-Meeks on Thursday said her top priority would be an infrastructure bill, assuming the coronavirus pandemic is under control before she would take office in January.  “We really need a big infrastructure bill,” Miller-Meeks told the Greater Des Moines Partnership. “I had expected it before this. I know President Trump had […]

State parks see 11.1% jump in visits as COVID-weary Iowans head outdoors

By: - September 5, 2020

The centennial year for Iowa’s state parks has seen healthy jumps in park use as Iowans flock to outdoor areas during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through July 31, park-goers had logged 10,039,047 visits to the 61 state parks. That’s up 11.1% from the same period a year ago, when 9,035,398 had visited. The  campgrounds specifically saw […]